Epoxy Resin Printing – the Right Tool for the Job…
As we’ve all heard, the advent of the Internet and digital media, have tended to reduce the number of printed materials. Magazines and newspapers in particular have seen their circulations decline, while certain types of book publishing have actually seen gains – in light of doomsayers’ predictions (with a corresponding decline in digital and audio books – read more below…). *
Epoxy Resins in the Printing Industry
Epoxy resins are playing a key role in the printing industry – both in materials and processes. Resins are used in the formulation of inks, as a binder to a variety of substrates, for printing on glass, metals, plastics and other surfaces. Waterborne printing inks, enhanced with epoxy resin, provide excellent surface adhesion and water resistance. (source: sciencedirect.com) and are used in a variety of applications including woodworking, construction, building coating and more.
Resin 3D printing uses thermoplastics and liquid resins to create myriad solid objects out of liquid composites. Epoxy resin may also be used as a finish coat for 3D objects – providing both a protective layer resistant to heat, moisture and chemicals – as well as giving items much better aesthetics than one straight from the printer.
3D printed Objects using Liquid Epoxy Resin
One of the most widely used technologies to produce 3D printed objects using liquid epoxy resin is called stereolithography. This process builds parts, prototypes, models and more layer-by-layer with polymer in a large liquid-filled tank. As each layer of liquid polymer is laid, it is struck by a laser to quickly cure it. The process continues in this fashion until the piece is complete. Stereolithography is a rapid manufacturing process and may be used to create almost any design. The technology had been used to great success in a host of applications including medical modeling, prototyping and creating parts, and the computer industry.
The Word on the Printing & Publishing Industries…
*According to business and market information research firm IbisWorld; “The Printing industry is in the midst of a decline as digital products and services continue to displace printed materials. The industry’s two largest markets, advertising and publishing, have both accelerated their moves online over the five years to 2019, reducing demand for printing.”
Publishers Weekly reports however, “Sales of trade books rose 3.8% in the first six months of 2019 over the comparable period in 2018, according to figures compiled by the American Association of Publishers (AAP) as part of its StatShot program.” The report goes on to explain, “within the adult book category, the 1.4% sales gain was led by a 35.2% increase in downloadable audio sales” and “E-book sales dropped 3.8% in the period, while hardcover sales fell 3.2%.”